Water Justice Lab Youth Scientist Overview & Application

Join Water Justice Lab as a Youth Science Fellow!

Water Justice Lab is hiring for the 2024 season. Scroll down for dates & job description. Applications open until May 1 or until all positions are filled. Email [email protected] to apply.

What do Youth Science Fellows do?

Watch our Echoes from Lock One video trailer to see youth in action! For a more in depth look at Water Justice Lab youth fellows’ work, check out Home on the Hudson, and you can learn more about Riverkeeper’s water quality monitoring from the short film Source to Sea.

Work in the field collecting water samples

Work in the lab testing water

Travel the capital region learning about our local water supply

Make field recordings and audio stories

Radio Stories: 2022 Macroinvertebrate Sampling, 2022 solar pontoon boat ride, 2022 sewage treatment plant visit

Connect water health with environmental justice, art, and community organizing

2024 Schedule & Details

SAMPLING (roughly ~12-3 pm)

  • May 11th/12th (Saturday/Sunday)
  • June 27th/28th (ThursdayFriday)
  • July 25th/26th (Thursday/Friday)
  • August 22nd/23rd (Thursday/Friday)
  • September 21st/22nd (Saturday/Sunday)
  • October 19th/20th (Saturday/Sunday) 

Source to Estuary Program

  • 8 Thursdays in July/August ~1-5 pm

$15/hour, roughly 60-70 hours for the season (~$900-1050 total)

Job Description & Application

Water Justice Lab at The Sanctuary for Independent Media (the Sanctuary) seeks high school students to conduct water quality testing and produce media at NATURE Lab, a community biology lab on The Sanctuary’s campus North Central Troy, 3319 6th Avenue. Priority will be given to students residing in the city of Troy and attending Troy or Lansingburgh High. 

About the Position

Youth Scientists will test water samples from the Hudson River for bacteria as part of Riverkeeper’s Community Science Program, and produce media about water infrastructure and related issues. They will work in the lab and the field with other Water Justice Youth Scientists as well as Sanctuary and Riverkeeper staff. As a team we will work together to conduct research, create media, and build and nurture relationships with the broader community around water justice. 

Responsibilities include:

  • Attend monthly water testing sessions
  • Attend weekly Source to Estuary field trips in June and July
  • Contribute to positive collaborative team, filled with creativity and trust
  • Treat each other with respect and be willing to learn from each other
  • Follow through with commitment and communication within the team (responding to texts and emails in a timely manner)

Position Qualifications

  • Interest in science and environmental justice
  • Commitment to making a positive change in your community
  • Desire to work together as a team and build skills 
  • Interest in doing lab work and learning lab procedures 
  • Enthusiasm for field-based learning (sampling water in streams, taking a boat trip on the river etc)
  • Interest in doing and connecting art, science and media

More about us

The Sanctuary for Independent Media’s mission is to use art and participatory action to promote social and environmental justice and freedom of creative expression. Since 2005 we have been building an arts and environmental education campus in North Central Troy, NY.

Water Justice Lab, located at the northernmost point of the Hudson River Estuary, has several goals: 

  1. Maintain and run a lab for water quality testing in Troy for Riverkeeper’s Upper Hudson sampling; 
  2. Employ local youth and ensure they are centered in the experience;
  3. Work with local communities to build participation and understanding of  water issues and how to make a difference – to build Environmental Justice networks;
  4. Create radio/podcast/media content publicizing the Water Justice Lab, water science and water civics, and related areas.


We actively seek to build a diverse team with a wide range of experiences, skills, and perspectives. We are proud to be an equal opportunity employer and, as an organization committed to inclusivity, we consider all applicants regardless of race, sex, gender identity or expression, color, sexual orientation, religion, marital status, disability, political affiliation or national origin.

How to apply

Send an email explaining your interest in the Water Justice Lab Fellowship, and include your contact information (phone, address, school), and contact information for a reference (like a teacher, school counselor, or coach). Email [email protected] with the words “Water Justice Lab Youth Scientist” in the subject line. Deadline is May 1st, or until positions are filled.

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About The Sanctuary

We use art and participatory action to promote social and environmental justice and freedom of creative expression.

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